Plaza calm despite not-guilty verdict in Zimmerman trial

Mayor and police anticipated demonstrations, riots

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Tensions were high and emotions were across the board in the Kansas City area after a Florida jury found George Zimmerman not guilty of murdering unarmed teena ger Trayvon Martin last year.

Both Mayor Sly James and Police Chief Darryl Forte sent out messages urging peace Saturday evening.

James Tweeted: " #KansasCity time to keep things calm in our city after this verdict!"

Some local groups r eportedly planned protests and even riots in anticipation of the decision. However, an hour after the jury's verdict was read, the Plaza was much like any other Saturday night. The conversation around the J. C. Nichols Fountain was about the not-guilty verdict, but there were no demonstrations or protests.

Kansas City criminal defense attorney Daniel Ross spoke with 41 Action News Saturday. He said proving a case with circumstantial evidence is very difficult for prosecutors, and that's how the system is structured. Ross said that if people are upset with the decision, they shouldn't be staging violent protests; they should be urging their legislators to make changes.

 

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